A new take on partial Control: defective thematic intervention
Michelle Sheehan
April 2012

Partial Control (PC) presents a non-trivial problem for the Movement Theory of Control (MTC). As Landau (1999, 2000, 2003, 2004) has argued at length, PC patterns with Exhaustive Control (EC) in being sensitive to locality/island conditions, in yielding only a sloppy reading under ellipsis and functioning as a bound variable - the diagnostics used by Hornstein (1999) et seq. to argue that EC involves movement. Unlike EC, however, PC cannot easily be analysed as movement as the connection between controller and controllee is a non-exhaustive subset-superset relation wholly untypical of A-chains. This paper describes apparent examples of PC in European Portuguese (EP) with both inflected and uninflected infinitives. It is proposed that while Boeckx, Hornstein and Nunes’ (2010) covert commitative approach provides a plausible account of PC with uninflected infinitives, this analysis does not extend to PC with inflected infinitives. These data, moreover, are also problematic for Landau’s (2000, 2004) Agree-based approach. A new analysis is put forth whereby PC with inflected infinitives arises from defective thematic intervention (in the sense of Chomsky 2000) in a system where a single DP can bear multiple theta-roles (in line with the core idea behind the MTC).
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/001500
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: cambridge occasional papers in linguistics Volume 6, Article 1: 1–47, 2012
keywords: partial control, movement theory of control, defective intervention, multiple agree, theta-theory, syntax
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